Monday, July 27, 2015

If Every Day Were Like Oshkosh...

You'd awake every morning at 6:30am to the beautiful music of Merlin V12s at full power as half a dozen P-51s roar overhead to embark on the dawn patrol....

You'd cheerfully chat with perfect strangers while standing in line for a lukewarm shower in a portable shower block....

You'd plan every day over eggs & pancakes at Tall Pines Cafe, deciding who you want to hear speak more that afternoon: Burt Rutan or Bob Hoover....

You'd forget that air conditioning exists, spend every day gloriously bathed in sweat, thank heaven for every little wisp of wind, and find yourself pausing in the shadows of DC-3s, B-17s, and A350s....

You'd come to find farmer's tans incredibly sexy...and your standards for attractiveness in the opposite sex would ease considerably....

Instead of traveling overseas, you'd take a 10-minute bus ride to the Seaplane Base and marvel at how quaint and beautiful and relaxed it is....

You'd almost never see litter on the street. On the rare occasions you did, someone would usually swoop in to pick it up before you could get to it....

You'd live off of burgers and cheese curds, and you'd still stay skinny from walking twenty miles a day....

You'd never actually talk to Air Traffic Control, only rocking your wings in reply. All air traffic controllers would be extremely proficient, calm under fire, and unfailingly friendly....

You'd think IFR stands for "I Follow Railroads...."

You'd be an ace at last-minute runway changes, short approaches, and spot landings....

You'd check your Facebook feed, see that a good friend just landed, and arrange to meet under the Brown Arch in an hour. Really good friends would insist on trekking two miles to admire your airplane parked in the South 40....

Your musical tastes would narrow to 70s rock, modern country, and Jerry's One Man Band....

You'd swear off airshows forever, declaring you've seen Sean Tucker doing enough impossibly violent things to airplanes to last a lifetime, only to spy a new act featuring something improbable, graceful, and arresting, and you'd end up right back on the flight line with every other slack-jawed, sky-gazing rube....

You'd go to an off-airport party, run into random friends and former coworkers and aviation journalists and airshow performers and aviation legends, and the most remarkable coincidence of the night would be meeting a guy whose hangar is right next to yours back home....

You'd find sitting in the bleachers of the ultralight grass strip at dusk, watching powered parachutes making endless circuits and passes just for the sheer joy of flight, a perfectly acceptable form of evening entertainment....

You'd drift off to sleep every night under the wing of your own airplane, bedded on soft grass, knowing you'll wake up to the roar of Merlin V12s and the promise of another full day in Airplane Heaven....

Alas, Oshkosh comes but once a year. Only 51 more weeks to go!

15 comments:

amulbunny's random thoughts said...

Sounds like you had an awesome time. I watched some of it on the live webcam.

OT I was shopping at the target in ManBch a few Sundays ago and there was a pilot from Little NewCo and his mom there. He had brought her out for the weekend. We were talking about the blue shirts and the fact that he could bring 4 bottles of Mtn Dew through security so his mom would have some to drink on the plane. I mentioned that I read your blog for years and he said, Oh Sam? I flew with him a couple of times and he's a great guy. Your ears might have been burning.

Glad you had such a great time.

typingtalker said...

My most memorable morning wake-up was a landing DC-9 in full reverse thrust back when KOSH had airline service and you didn't have to arrive a month before the show to camp near the runway.

Jim G. said...

You are quite a gent Sam! Taking special needs people flying :)

I can see the sheer happiness on her face, standing next to that plane. It must bring quite a bit of light into her life. More pilots should be like you! ;)

If I wanted to organize a similar event, would you oblige and how much do you charge per(special) person?

Dave said...

Thanks for another great write up. BTW, I'm the guy who kept 626JD in the air way back when.

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chrsitine PACE said...

Really nice article to read and it simply portrays us about the real life of the people lived in oshkosh.It simply tells us about what works are being done by the people living in that area for survival. On reading this article, i am simply amazed as this is the ever best article which i have read before. As i have been working as a resume writer in one of the leading online resume writing service, i have been getting only very less amount of time to refresh myself and during those refresh period and all, i will spend some time in some of the world's best blogs such as like this and today i am really feeling very proud that, i have spend more valuable time period in my lifetime.

Anonymous said...

Sam: hope all is well. Has your carrier put the brakes on your blogging?

Pete Templin said...

Have you transitioned to training on "The Boeing" yet? Hope all is well at/above FL250...

CrookedWings said...

That sums it up! I always love that old saying about IFR: I follow roads. My pilot buddies and I always bring that one up around the hangar.

I'm one of those old-school pilots who's more easily wooed by Jim Peitz in his Bonanza than Sean D Tucker (but I appreciate 'em all!).

Anonymous said...

We need more posts!

Rahmat Hidayat said...

Really awesome what a beauty good job

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Anonymous said...

Hi Sam: if the blog is dead please let us know. Hope all is well!

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